PIB News 5th Oct, 2020

(General Studies-III: Technology, Economic Development, Bio diversity, Environment, Security and Disaster Management, Achievements of Indians in science & technology; indigenization of technology and developing new technology.)

Successful Flight Test of SMART

Supersonic Missile Assisted Release of Torpedo (SMART) has been successfully flight tested today 5th Oct 2020 at 1145 hrs from Wheeler Island off the coast of Odisha. All the mission objectives including missile flight upto the range and altitude, separation of the nose cone, release of Torpedo and deployment of Velocity Reduction Mechanism (VRM) have been met perfectly.

The tracking stations (Radars, Electro Optical Systems) along the coast and the telemetry stations including down range ships monitored all the events.

SMART is a missile assisted release of lightweight Anti-Submarine Torpedo System for Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW) operations far beyond Torpedo range.This launch and demonstration is significant in establishing Anti-Submarine warfare capabilities.

A number of DRDO laboratories including DRDL, RCI Hyderabad, ADRDE Agra, NSTL Visakhapatnam have developed the technologies required for SMART.

Raksha Mantri Shri Rajnath Singh congratulated the DRDO Scientists for the important feat.

Secretary DD R&D & Chairman DRDO Dr G Satheesh Reddy, said that SMART is a game changer technology demonstration in the Anti-Submarine Warfare.


(General Studies- II: Governance, Constitution, Polity, Social Justice and International relations, Government policies and interventions for development in various sectors and issues arising out of their design and implementation.)

New Labour Codes will promote harmonious industrial relations, ensure higher productivity & create more jobs: Santosh Kumar Gangwar
New Labour Codes will ensure peaceful and harmonious labour relations in the country: President, AIOE

Shri Santosh Kumar Gangwar, Minister of State (IC) for Labour & Employment, Govt of India said here today that the new Labour Codes will promote harmonious industrial relations, higher productivity and more employment generation.

Addressing the webinar ‘86th Annual General Meeting of AIOE, allied body of FICCI’, Shri Gangwar said, “The labour codes will establish a transparent, answerable and simple mechanism along with one registration, one license and less return filing for all the Codes. We have taken several steps through Labour Codes to help the workforce and take care of their well-being.”

Shri Gangwar further stated that the government has been constantly striving to bring in the much-needed labour reforms in the country for the first time in last 73 years. “In last six years many extensive consultations were held with all stakeholders including the employers, trade unions and experts before finalizing these Codes,” he added.

Highlighting the benefits of the new Labour Codes, Shri Gangwar said that these will cover over 50 crore workers from organized, unorganized sector for minimum wages and social security. “Fixed term employment has been introduced and fixed term employee will get same service conditions as regular employees”, he added.

He emphasized that in order to discourage flash strike in any unit; provision of a 14-day notice has been introduced in the IR Code. “All workers in any establishment will have to give a 14-day notice before announcing strike. This has been introduced to ensure that during this period, the grievances can be sorted out in an amicable way. There will also be a provision of setting up of a Negotiating Union which will also benefit the workers and industry,” said Mr Gangwar.

To remove the inspector raj from the system, Shri Gangwar said, “Inspector will now be called inspector cum facilitator. To bring in transparency, effectiveness and accountability, we have also made provision for setting up a web-based inspection system. These new Codes will not only make the labour laws simpler but also bring in ease of doing business.”

Shri Gangwar said that the government is also streamlining the process of compounding of offences to ensure early settlement of the cases. “The amount collected through compounding will be transferred to a special social security fund which will benefit the workers in the unorganized sector,” he noted. 

To ensure quick decision making, Shri Gangwar said that the provision of ‘deemed approval’ has also been introduced for obtaining licenses, approvals, etc. “A definitive time-frame has been set. If the license issuing authority does not give it in the given timeframe then the company will get ‘deemed approval’.

Ms Dagmar Walter, Director ILO, DWT for South Asia and Country Office in India, said that the success of the new labour codes will primarily depend upon its implementation strategy, capacity of local and state institutions and participation of social partners. “Labour policies and laws are the backbone of the world of work, guaranteeing protection of interest for workers and employers and creating a safe and conducive work environment, necessary for productivity. The labour reforms in the post COVID-19 scenario need to ensure sustainable solutions, which are capacitated to protect the most vulnerable. We will need measures ensuring the development of a just and inclusive society,” she added.

Ms Walter further said that India is a symbol of unity in diversity for the world and it is the best prescription to achieve the desired sustainable reform, development for a better future of work. “The pandemic points at the importance of having social partnerships between employers and worker organizations,” she noted.

Mr RohitRelan, President, AIOE while complementing the government on the new Labour Codes said that these will have a far-reaching impact for peaceful and harmonious labour relations in our country. “AIOE whole heartedly welcomes the new labour reforms as it opens new horizons to bring India's large informal sector employees into formal workforce. We are sure the implementation of these codes will enable India to climb up further in the ranking of Ease of Doing Business,” he added.

Mr Relan further said that the new codes will also promote employment generation and the opening of new horizons for the informal sector employees to formal sector will certainly help in reviving our economy and making it one of the leading economies of the world.

Mr ShishirJaipuria, President Elect, AIOE said the new Labour Codes would definitely send a positive message to the investors. “The reforms brought by the government in operational areas, using ICT in compliance issue, will no doubt reduce bureaucratic hurdles and avoidable paperwork. These reforms are not only going to help the employers and employees during the COVID 19 but will hopefully prove to be progressive and relevant even post COVID too,” he added.

Mr Japuria also assured the Minister that the employers will do their best to ensure that an environment of growth and social harmony continues to be maintained in the country.


(General Studies-III: Technology, Economic Development, Bio diversity, Environment, Security and Disaster Management, Science and Technology- developments and their applications and effects in everyday life.)

DBT-THSTI recognized as a Global Bioassay Laboratory to assess COVID 19 Vaccine by CEPI
Translational Health Science And Technology Institute (THSTI), an autonomous institute of the Department of Biotechnology, has now been recognized by CEPI as one of the Global network of Laboratories for centralized assessment of COVID 19 Vaccines. The CEPI network will initially involve six labs, one each in Canada, Britain, Italy, the Netherlands, Bangladesh and India. Under the CEPI Global network the Laboratory will use the same reagents and follow a common set of protocols to measure the immune response of multiple vaccine candidates under development and trial this will greatly harmonize the Vaccine trial process and allow different vaccine candidates to be compared and speed up the selection of the most effective candidate. The Ind-CEPI mission for establishment of BSL-3 facility, is a translational laboratory for platform technologies and a Bioassay laboratory for development of assays to measure clinical immunogenicity. The mandate of the bioassay laboratory at THSTI is to provide validated assays for vaccine development on par with global standards.

The Department of Biotechnology, Ministry of Science & Technology, and Government of India has been implementing the IndCEPI mission ‘India Centric Epidemic Preparedness through Rapid Vaccine Development: Supporting Indian Vaccine Development’. The objectives of this mission are aligned with the Global Initiative of Coalition of Epidemic Preparedness for Innovation (CEPI ) and aims to strengthen the development of vaccines and associated competencies/technologies for the diseases of epidemic potential in India.

Dr Renu Swarup, Secretary of The Department of Biotechnology, Ministry of Science & Technology, Government of India said: “.The Department of Biotechnology, Government of India is supporting efforts for COVID 19 vaccine development and testing. More than 30 Vaccines are at different stages of development with 3 in Human trials and nearly 4 in advanced stages of Preclinical .We are very pleased that the bioassay laboratory at Translational Health Science and Technology Institute, an autonomous institute of Department of Biotechnology, has been identified by CEPI for centralised immunoassay analysis for COVID 19 vaccines under development globally. It is well-positioned to run comparability studies with other laboratories internationally and will form an important part of the global network .This is another excellent example of Ind CEPI and CEPI Partnership.




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